At least for me, it is not a question of affording it. I honestly
can't see why anyone wants one. IF I wanted a performance/luxury car,
I'd go for a BMW. At least the Germans know how to make a good
performing car with decent ergonomics. Toyota has a nack for making
cars large on the outside and cramped on the inside. But to be honest,
I am not a BMW sort of guy. I like a nice comfortable car with decent
performance, but I am not going to drive on the autobahn and I don't
need to impress anyone with how much money I can waste on a second
A 3 year old Ford Fusion at the moment (I am very happy with this car
V6/AWD/SEL). Ialso have a relatively new F150 that replaced a Nissan
Frontier that I finally couldn't stand anymore. I have owned lots of
differ things over the years: Here is the list as best I can remember,
in the order i owned them:
1972 Ford Pinto - bought new
1975 Datsun 280Z - bought new when I graduated from college, drove it
for 3 years and 50k miles. It had numerous minor problems (clutch
mechanism, fuel injection, rust) but i loved it jsut the same.
1962 Austin Healey Sprite - used, bought in pieces, sold it when I
left Raleigh for a job
1968 Austin Heakey Sprite - used, it ran, but I never licenced it
1978 Ford Fairmont Futura Coupe - bought new - this car was dead
reliable and fast, but I hated it
1972 Ford Pinto - actually I reacquired my original Pinto from my
sister to use as an autocross car - it was a great cheap car
1974 Jensen-Healey - bought used. Eventually I grew tired of the
buzzzing on long trips and sold it. It required constant maintenace.
1973 Ford Pinto - bought used when I wrecked the 74 JH, drove it for a
few months, then sold it to a co-worker. His kids drove it for almost
8 more years
1978 Ford Courier - Gift from my Father (used). It was a horrible
1974 Jensen-Healey - a rolling wreck that I basically stored for a
1981 Plymouth Relaint - Drove great, when it wasn't broken. I traded
it after 9 months of ownership
1981 Audi Coupe - I loved this car, but for some reason only kept it
for a couple of years (brain fade)
1983 Mazda 626 - Never should have bought this car. I hated it from
day 2, but my Sister drove it for 8 years
1978 Ford Fiesta - acquired from my Sister in a swap for the Mazda - I
loved this car, except no A/C
1975 Jensen-Healey - bought used, drove for a couple of years. Sold it
when I got married (should have kept the car instead)
1986 Mercury Sable - a terrific car that I drove for 10 years and
147,000 miles. A co-worker drove it for another 100,000 miles.
1983 Toyota Cressida - it came with my ex-wife. It was a rolling turd.
Crappy interior, cramped, bad plastic, bad paint, rust problems,
horrible A/C. This was the worst POS I ever had to drive. It was even
more unreliable than the Plymouth Reliant K, but drove horribly. I
can't see how Toyota survied build crap like this.
1986 Ford Ranger - Gift from my Father. Eventually destroyed by a
1989 Ford Taurus Wagon - Bought new, left with the ex-wife
1992 Ford F150 - Bought new. Drove it for 14 years. Great truck.
1996 Ford Explorer - Bought new, but after a year I decided to move up
to an Expedition, sold the Explorer for within $2K of what it cost me.
1997 Ford Expedition - Kept for 5 years and 150,000 miles. Great
truck, two problems in 150,000 miles (coil pack at 100k, alternator at
2001 Ford Mustang GT Convertible - Bought new. I loved this car, but
decided it had to go when my son turned 16. 40K miles with one problem
(oil leak, fixed under warranty)
2003 Ford Expedition -Bought new. As good as the 1997, but I only kept
it for 3 years and 100,000 miles. I decided I no longer needed a big
2003 Saturn Vue - I bought this new to replace the Mustang. I intended
it to be my Son's car. After he destroyed the transmission (CVT -
under warranty) and the air bag assembly (beating on the horn), I
2004 Ford Thunderbird - Bought barely used. I loved this car. For some
crazy reason I only lept it for 2 years. On the plus side, it never
broke and I sold it for almost what I paid for it. I'd really like to
2006 Nissan Frontier - my attempt at downsizing trucks - the truck had
plenty of power, but it was uncomfortbale inside. It had a few
problems. After 3 years and 70k miles I finally got tired of being
crammed into it and traded it off.
1996 Pontiac Firebird - Bought used. My son talked me into buying this
POS to replace the Saturn. It had the little V6 and could barely get
out of it's own way. It had so many problems that I never worried
about him geting in trouble driving it.
2006 Mustang V6 Coupe - Bought new. I finally had to get my son a
reliable car. V6 Mustang Coupes were dirt cheap (less than $16K new).
He was happy, I was happy, until he started getting speeding
tickets.....live and learn.
2002 Mercury Grand Marquis. This was my Mothers car. I thought I would
keep it after I sold the Thunderbird. After 3 months of drving it, I
couldn't take it anymore and traded it on a Fusion.
2007 Ford Fusion - Bought new. This is my current car. 55K miles
without a problem. Very comfortable. Performance is decent. Fuel
economy could be better.
2008 Mazda 3 - Bought this new for my older son to drive when he
started staying with me. It is amazingly roomy inside. My Son
compalins that the A/C is not strong enough and that he deosn't get 35
mpg. Oh well....
2009 F150 SuperCab - after suffering in the Nissan Frontier for three
eyars, I finally got fed up and traded it on this F150. It is so much
better it is hard to believe I ever talked myself into the Frontier.
Both have 4WD. The Frontier was a V6 and if you were racing between
stoplights it was awesome. However the gas mileage of the Frontier was
less than 1 mpg better than the much larger (and far more comfortable)
F150. The F150 can haul much more, rides much better, and so far
hasn't had a single problem (well except for a flat tire last Wed).
In addition to this list, there are numerous other "family vehicels" -
4 Toyotas, 2 VWs, numerous older Ford Trucks, a Freestyle, several
LTDs, Dodge Truck, 5 different Ford Rangers, etc. I am the family car
guy, so I get to work on all of them. If I was rating brands, I think
Plymouth/Dodge would be the worst and Ford the best. SOmething like..
Worst to best - Chrysler, GM, VW, Mazda, Nissan, Toyota, Ford. The
recent Toyotas have been much more reliable than the '83 Cressida, but
they still have horrible ergonomics, bland styling, and drive like
riding lawn mowers. Nissans have a little more style but I don't think
they are as reliable. I mostly don't like Mazdas becasue of the '83
626 and the Ford Courier (really a Mazda). No one in my family will
buy a VW for any reason, even though I liked the Audi. Both of my
Sisters suffered through VWs - they drove great but were unreliable.
The SO's daugher has a Jetta and it is hated as well. Two out of two
GM products were crap. No way I'll buy a Chrysler, or a Fiat badged as
a Chrysler. But to be honest, the difference from worst to best in my
list aren't all that great. I'd even consider a new Camaro....
If I was going to buy a car right now, at this moment - it would
prbably be a Nissan 370Z. I like them. I am afraid to go near a Nissan
car lot becasue I'd be tempeted to buy one. Next choice would be a
2010 Taurus (especailly the SHO, but it is too over-priced ...I
think). I also spend a lot of time looking at used 2004/2005
Thunderbirds. I miss my 2004, especially in the spring and fall. I do
wonder about some the Korean cars too. The Genesis looks pretty good
for a good price.
Oh well, for now I need to ride with what I have.
I don't see anything wrong with having an opinion. You haev yours, I
have mine. I certainly understand that people have different tastes.
Is there something wrong with expressing my opinion? Do you only want
to hear the "Toyota is awesome" mantra?
I find somethings illogical. Paying more for Toyotas becasue they say
"Lexus" is one of those illogical things. I can comprehend buying the
LS Lexus since they don't sell the Toyota equivalent here (I think in
Japan it is the Toyota Crown Majesta), but I'll never understand the
appeal of the ES350 (thinly disquised Camry), GX (4Runner in drag), LX
(Land Crusier with glitz), or the RX line (since Toyota now sells the
Venza). Without those models (particualrly the EX and RX) there would
be no Lexus, since all the other models together don't sell enough
cars to justify separate dealerships.
True, if you truly decide it on that basis.
But too often, you can't get the trim level/feature sets on the Toyota
Camry that you can get on the Lexus ES. That's just how Toyota does
things. The ES is, by and large, a higher trim level/feature set.
So, to get the feature set you want, you are forced to go to Lexus.
It's not just because there's an L on the back of the thing. If Toyota
offered the exact same feature set, I'd buy it. But they don't, so if I
want that feature set, I'm forced to take the L with it.
Unfortunately, the "L" adds thousands more than the real value of the
upgrades. If people refused to pay thousands extra for what is
essentially a Camry with a higher trim package, Toyota would quit
screwing them. I understand the desire for nicer appointments. I don't
understand the willingness to pay thousands more for a few hundred
dollars worth of fluff. Just becasue you can afford it, doesn't make
it logical. I guess PT Barnum was right.
Everything's negotiable. Toyota isn't screwing anyone. People who want
those trim packages are apparently willing to pay a price that YOU'RE
not willing to pay; that doesn't mean they're being screwed. It just
means you're envious of them and their ability to get that stuff.
And in a USA Today poll of 100 automotive journalists from across the
country, they list the Lexus GS as the best luxury sedan, dollar for
My guess is they're more objective and more informed than you are.
But yet BMWs far outsell Lexus. In my mind, the only reason to buy a
car like a BMW or Lexus in the US is to impress your friends. And at
leat to me, a BMW is a lot more impressive. No matter how they spin
it, a Lexus is just a Toyota. Not that that is a bad thing, but not an
impressive thing either. If a Toyota is what you like, I can't see
paying thousands extra for a Toyota becasue it is called a Lexus.
In the case of the ES you are mostly paying for slightly better
plastic trim, a little more sound deadening, and an "L" on the trunk
lid. The V6 Lexus has essentially the same performance as the V6
Camry, is a little quieter, but has little less interior room becasue
of the puffed up seats and slightly worse handling becasue of the
softer suspension. BUT most importantly, it costs over $6K more....a
fools bargin if you ask me.
On Fri, 31 Jul 2009 11:11:58 -0400, "C. E. White"
This is simoply not true.
This is flat out ludicrous. Both companies make nice cars, and they
cost more than other cars because of that. Have you ever driven a BMW
or Lexus? If you can't appreciate the difference between a BMW or
Lexus and a Ford Focus, and think people only buy them to impress
people, you're an idiot.
Just because a couple of Lexus models are based on Toyota platforms
doesn't mean a Lexus is a Toyota. You pay more because you get more.
Is an Acura a Honda, too? Do you see no difference between Infiniti
Upscale brands come with more standard equipment and better
performance. They cost more for reasons that are obvious to anyone but
you. If you can't afford them, or don't feel they're worth it, doesn't
mean that the people who do are getting fleeced. You get what you pay
In the US, Lexus and BMW sell about the same number of vehicles.
However, worldwide there is no comparison. BMW outsells the Lexus
brand more than 2 to 1.
The Lexus models sold here are Toyotas models in other markets. Ditto
for Infiniti. I defnintely think an Acura is a Honda although Honda
has done a better job of differentiating the Acura models from the
related Honda models, but underneath, they are still closely related
while the prices are not....
Our cars may not be the same as yours, for instance,
Lexus cars are always the most reliable car in our "Which?" magazine
surveys (a magazine that accepts no adverts and works alongside European
governments trades standards offices).
To quote the magazine, "Japanese aren't just among the most reliable
brands, they are the most reliable brands".
Just a quick look conforms that there is no connection between the Lexus
IS brands in the UK and the Toyota Camry.
In the US, the ES is a FWD equivalent model and runs along side the IS
RWD model and is indeed based on the Camry. We never got it here, so I
have never been able to see the spec differences/similarities.
But I love my IS even if it is a bit underpowered compared to the Toyota
and SAAB turbos I have gotten used to, and the loverly big LS400/Celsior
I used stroll arround in.
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